MOLLY BAWN. 19
' Are you afraid of me ? ' asks she, witli a glance half-
' I am,' replies he slowly,
• • • • ■
' Now you are all my own property,' says IMolly gaily,
three hours later, after they have bidden good-bye to Mr.
and Mrs. Massereene: and eaten their own luncheon tete-a-
tete. ' You cannot escape me. And what shall we do with
ourselves this glorious afternoon ? Walk ?—talk ?—or------'
' Talk,' says Luttrell lazily,
* No, walk,' says Molly emphatically.
' If you have made up your mind to it, of course thcr j is
little use in my suggesting anything.'
' Very little. Not that you ever do suggest anything,'
maliciously. ' Now, stay there, and resign yourself to your
fate, while I go and put on my hat.'
Along the grass, over the lawn, down to the water's edge
—over the water, and into the green fields beyond the young
man follows his guide. Above the blazing sun is shining
with all its might upon the goodly earth ; beneath the grass
is browning, withering beneath its rays; and in the man's
heart has bloomed that tenderest, cruellest, sweetest of all
delights, first love.
He has almost ceased to deny this fact to himself.
Already he knows, by the miserable doubts that pursue him,
how foolishly he lies to himself when he thinks otherwise.
The sweet carelessness, the all-satisfying joy in the pi-esent
that once was his, has now in his need proved false, and
flying, leaves but a dull unrest in its place. He has fallen
madly, gladly, idiotically in love with beautiful Molly
Every curve of her pliant body is to him an untold
poem ; every touch of her hands a new delight; every tone
of her voice is as a song rising from out the gloom of the
' Here you are to stand and admire our potatoes,' says
Molly, standing still, and indicating with a little sweep of
her hand the field in question. ' Did you ever see so fine a
crop 1 And did you notice how dry and floury they were at
'I did,' s.ays Luttrell, lying very commendably.
'Good boy. We lake very great pride out of our